2nd Annual Chicago Vegan Food and Drink Festival Review – Who Needs Meat?!

Who needs meat when you can attend the 2nd Annual Chicago Vegan Food and Drink Festival? The festival was also in its third year in Toronto, Canada (Saturday, August 19th at Fort York, Garrison Common). The Chicago fest took place Saturday, June 10th at Butler Field in Grant Park.

 

A vegan BBQ burger

 

The world is vegan if you want it!

 

Vegan Food and Drink Festival organizers have served 18,000 guests since 2015 and this year, they prepared to make room for thousands more. This daylong festival paid homage to top-tier vegan vendors, serving up the only the very best in comfort food, craft brews and wine.

 

Food choices included offerings from 75 vendors from a variety of local and international vendors such as Doomie’s, Doug McNish, Arlo’s, and more! Sky-high burgers, creamy bowls of mac n’ cheese, and epic brownie sundaes are only some of the items that made this one great feast Chicago and Toronto won’t soon forget.

 

“The team at Ecorazzi is ready to move one step closer to world vegan domination with our upcoming festival season,” said Hellenic Vincent De Paul, Owner of Ecorazzi. “Third time's a charm, and that means more of the incredible vegan offerings people have come to expect from The Vegan Food & Drink Festival, plus HUGE surprises!”

 

Care to get your eyes checked?!

 

Ecorazzi is the leading online magazine where people go to get the latest in news, pop culture, and commentary with an unapologetically vegan voice. By offering a fresh perspective on breaking news and viral trends, Ecorazzi is helping redefine vegan education, advocacy, and entertainment.

 

The fest had the beauitful Chicago skyline in back

 

Guests sitting and enjoying the food

 

It was a beautiful sunny and hot day when my friends and I attended the Vegan and Food Fest-none of us had ever attended before and we are all vegetarians! However, we also appreciate excellent vegan food, which is just as delicious. I was very excited to sample so many amazing sounding foods from vendors located in Chicago and surrounding suburbs.

 

There was everything from beer and wine to Kombucha to vegan dogs to burgers to ice cream to Indian and Mexican food to pizza! We did not know at which kiosk to start filling our stomachs. We started with deliciously grilled kale burger sliders with sweet and tangy roasted beet ketchup. We washed down the burgers with cold, crisp and refreshing dry hard ciders from Pacific Coast (strawberry and mango and Muscat). Next, we glided over to get some Indian food. We savored perfectly spiced samosas from Arya Bhavan. The business also offered gluten-free samosas and mango lassis for sale. The samosas could be dipped in delicious chutneys (savory cilantro or sweet tamarind). We also enjoyed tamales and tostadas from Bravo Vegan! Flavors included black bean bliss, say cheese and oaxaquenos.

 

The Shimmy Shack truck

 

Kale burger sliders

 

Vegan pizza

 

Pacific Coast dry hard cider

 

Arya Bhavan samosas

 

While we all took a break to digest the wonderful food we had been sampling, we sat down and enjoyed the festival scene and the crowds. There was a game of volleyball being played, an air-filled fun house, and of course, live music.

 

Other interesting snacks I tried were Brami Beans, which are a super food in Rome. Flavors came in sea salt, hot pepper, chilli lime, pesto, and garlic-herb. They tasted a bit of a cross between a lima bean and a white bean.

 

Bravo Vegan!

 

Bravo Vegan tostadas

 

Bravo Vegan tamales

 

Brami Superfood Beans

 

Finally, we were anxious to try some delicious looking vegan desserts while our stomachs allowed the little room we had left (though we always have that extra stomach for dessert!) We wanted pies and cookies, but everything was selling out. We then settled on simple ice cream bars with creamy vanilla ice cream dipped in dark chocolate. The treats were a perfect ending to a lovely day at the Vegan Food and Drink Fest on such a hot day.

 

Creamy and delicious vegan ice cream bar

 

 

Vegan kombucha

 

Now, let me ask you this meat eaters: After attending the Chicago Vegan Food and Drink Festival, do you really need meat?!

 

 

Photos: Jennifer Lunz

 

For information on this year’s festival, please visit their website.

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